Tis the season to be successful

How to improve your festive season retail offerings

We’ve got some creative ideas for you to increase your sales, through a variety of offerings and services that will make your store stand out from the rest.

Themed hampers

Over this crazy season, people often prefer pre-packaged options that take the guesswork out of buying. By offering a wide selection of ready-made hampers, you give customers better options in terms of price and size. It is also an ideal way to use up stock that needs to be sold soon. And offering different sizes caters to people’s travelling needs – if they don’t have transport, then a small hamper will be a better option for carrying around.

The festive season will soon be here – it’s a perfect opportunity to make excellent sales while helping customers to celebrate the season with their loved ones.

Theming the hampers to favourite sports teams can also add some excitement to the shopping experience. Use Kaiser Chiefs and Orlando Pirates-themed wrapping paper to make hampers even more attractive to loyal customers.

Gifts based on purchases

Small freebies often make a difference to overall basket sizes. Looking at the success of the Stickeez campaign at Pick n Pay, we can see how adding something very small and cheap to the purchase of a minimum amount can make a huge difference in sales. Perhaps adding R5 of airtime to every purchase over R200 is an option, or free lollipops for children whose parents make purchases. Walt Disney realised the value kids have in influencing their parents’ purchasing decisions – he called it “nag power”. This is why checkout aisles in a variety of shops often have products shelved at children’s eye level. Giving cheap gifts – such as water pistols – to children whose parents make bigger purchases is a great way to get them to drag their parents into your store again.

Displays

In retail, the best place to display is usually a metre in from the doorway on a low table. Customers automatically browse there, and it is a great space to push forward your best products and hampers. Consider putting your specials here to give them prominence, or even slow-moving stock that needs a chance to shine.

Signage

Always make it clear what is being promoted, and at what price. If a customer can’t find the price, they might give up and put the product down, moving on to the next thing. Having to pause shopping to find out the price of something can cause customers to shop somewhere else. So make sure items are prominently priced. Signs that advertise promotional items and hampers can help boost the sales of those items. You can make a chalkboard quite cheaply by mixing black paint with grout to make chalkboard paint. Make chalkboards that can be updated daily inside and outside your shop.

Services

Pre-orders

With all the family commitments the festive season demands, people sometimes don’t have enough time to shop. By making their shopping easier, you will stand out from other businesses. One of the ways you can do this is by allowing customers to pre-order their hampers. Print pamphlets with a list of products and hampers and distribute them through a mail drop. At the bottom of the pamphlet, put the store’s SMS number, and customers can pre-order their purchases with you up to three days in advance. You then set their orders aside, and they can collect their hampers and pay when they have a gap.

Delivery

Not everyone can transport their hampers, or has the time to collect. By offering a delivery service, you can provide a solution to customers who may wish to purchase heavier hampers but don’t have transport. You can charge per kilometre or by weight, depending on what kind of delivery transport you offer.

Alternative payment methods

Cash might be king, but it is often unsafe to carry. By offering alternative payment methods, you make it easier for customers to spend their money with you. Snapscan is a popular alternative to having a card machine. Customers simply scan a code with their phones to pay, and you get the money transferred into your account. Zapper is a similar app.

Absa’s Payment Pebble also allows you to swipe customer’s cards without having to incur the expenses of keeping a credit card machine.

Longer hours

The more time people have to shop, the more they will spend. If later hours are an issue due to security problems, then perhaps consider opening earlier to enable people to shop before the rush of the day starts.